The Solent Local Enterprise Partnership (LEP) has made two appointments to its board following a competitive round of applications. Prominent business leaders, Sandra Sassow and Nick Gross, have joined the board of directors after being elected independently by member businesses.
The Solent LEP board takes responsibility for shaping economic strategy in the region, including the development of a Strategic Economic Plan for the area and delivery of a growth programme valued at over £1bn and supported by a 151.9m Local Growth Deal with government to create up to 600 new jobs and enable 11,000 new homes to be built.
The Solent LEP board is made up of business, education and local authority directors and was the first LEP in the country to have a fully elected board.
Sandra Sassow is CEO and founder of SEaB Energy, one of the Solent most innovative SME (small and medium enterprise) businesses, which develops waste-to-energy technology to contribute to global carbon reduction. Sandra brings a wealth of experience promoting the profile of British technology and manufacturing at international forums, and manages ateam of engineers, developers and support staff at the University of Southampton Science Park.
As a local businesswoman I am keen to see our region thrive. I am thrilled to join the board of the Solent LEP and offer my time and expertise to help transform the Solent economy. It's an exciting time for our region and I believe that our innovative SME businesses will be the key to unlocking future growth and productivity.
Nick Gross is chairman and partner of Coffin Mew LLP, a well respected law firm in the Solent region. A senior professional who has worked and lived in the Solent area all his life, Nick advises entrepreneurs, SMEs and corporate organisations across the full spectrum of legal matters
Being part of the management team at Coffin Mew, I know exactly what it’s like to run a business, and the issues and pressures which business owners confront. I also head up our firm's transport & logistics sector group, which discusses transport infrastructurechallenges Solent businesses face and I look forward to working with colleagues at the LEP to help deliver the aims of the Solent Transport Investment Plan.
Gary Jeffries, Solent LEP chairman, said:
We are delighted to welcome Sandra and Nick to the board. Our Members have elected two top business people with outstanding and wide ranging experience. These appointments will add to what is already an exceptionally strong business voice at the LEP and position the Solent in a very positive position when it comes to securing further funding for the area.